Traffic flow being monitored in wake of evacuation order lift
PORT NECHES — While a county-issued evacuation order has been lifted, several locations within a small radius of the TPC Group chemical plant will be barricaded and residents within those barricades will be asked to show proper identification to law enforcement personnel for entry to their homes.
The barricades have been set up as emergency personnel continue to water-vaporize the plant in order to keep the metal and other materials cool in order to contain fires resulting from two explosions Wednesday.
Areas that have been closed off include:
- Magnolia Avenue at Park Street,
- Magnolia Avenue eastward to FM 366 at Hogaboom Road,
- Orchard Avenue at East Port Neches Avenue (half-barricade),
- East Port Neches Avenue at Walnut Street (contractors only allowed),
- East Port Neches Avenue at Pine Street (half-barricade),
- Grigsby at Texas Highway 136, and
- Texas 136 at Twin City Highway.
The Texas Department of Public Safety, in a news release, urges residents to use caution when traveling through previously restricted areas due to the continued presence of emergency personnel and first responders. Returning residents should follow the traffic instructions of law enforcement officers and other emergency services personnel.
DPS also asks returning residents to:
- not drive around barricades,
- beware of water hoses lying across the road and not drive over them,
- eliminate distractions in vehicles and pay full attention to driving, and
- slow down.
A small perimeter around the TPC Group plant is a restricted area. Port Neches Mayor Glenn Johnson cautioned residents to not approach the plant, as Port Neches Police will enforce the restricted area.